Stocks Wavered after Upbeat Jobs Data

U.S. stocks opened wavered in the early trading on Thursday as investors weighed a barrage of mixed earnings and a much stronger-than-expected jobless claims report. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately added 24.93 points, or 0.15%, to 17,216.30. The S&P 500 was down 3.17 points, or 0.16%, to 1,998.99. The Nasdaq Composite fell 18.56 points, or 0.40%, to 4,619.44.

The number of people seeking unemployment aid plunged last week to the lowest level in almost 15 years, a sign hiring will likely remain healthy. Weekly applications dropped 43,000 to a seasonally adjusted 265,000, the Labor Department said Thursday.

Ford Motor Co (F.N) on Thursday said it would keep relying on North America for its profit this year as the No. 2 U.S. automaker signaled that losses in Europe would be more than previously forecast. Ford had previously estimated losses from Europe at about $250 million in 2015. On Thursday, however, it backed away from that forecast, saying the loss would narrow from $1 billion in 2014 but would be wider than previously thought.

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